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I was looking to buy my daughter a sand pit 3 years ago for summer, i always look around for the best products at reasonable prices. I came across the plum sand pit, i have previously bought a wooden plum swing before and knew they were well made so i decided to buy the plum sand pit. I bought it from argos and cost £49.99, argos is still selling the same plum sand pit 3 years later. You can also buy it from toys r us or b&q. There is not much of a difference in price, i had it delivered at a cost of £4.95. It would easily fit in the boot of a family sized car as it comes flat packed. The plum sand pit is made from solid wood, its very hard wearing and has already been stained and treated, which saves you the expense and time. The sand pit is octagonal shaped and has been well finished, all the edges have been rounded off and well sanded to stop kids bumping or hurting themselves on sharp corners or getting splinters from the wood. The sand pit comes with a ground cover, this stops the sand getting damp or weeds growing through the sand pit. It also came with a cover, this protects the sand from getting wet or cats using it as a litter tray. It came with 4 bags of sand, this was enought to fill the sand pit, the sand was treated and safe for kids. I also got a 1 year warranty with the sand pit, this covers any rot or decay of the wood. Heres some rough measurements for you, height 24 cm, width 100 cm. Its recommended for kids aged 18 months upwards. It came flat packed which i detest but hubby had it built in 40 mins and he is no diy expert believe me! The instructions were easy to read and understand. I have put the sand pit on a nice level bit of grass. I am still very impressed with the sand pit although i expected quality from plum, its still going strong 3 years later and still being used. My daughter loves her sand pit and has many friend over in summer to play in it, its like the beach club in my back garden. The wood is lasting well, i had my doubts when i bought it thinking if i got a year out it i would be happy but as i have said its still alive! I have only treated the wood once since buying it and it was just to freshen it up as it was starting to fade with the harsh scottish weather. I bought new sand every year for it, and have spent a small fortune on toys for the sand pit. My daughter will be six this year and has lost a bit of interest in it but i am planing to turn it into a plant bed this year as its to good to through away. It encourages children to use there imagination and keeps them amused. I have lost count of how many sand castles were made in the sand pit or how many shells my daughter collected at the beach for her sand pit. I can honestly say you will not be disappointed with the sand pit and its well worth the money.
INTRODUCTION Having five nephews and nieces come to visit at this time of year can be very difficult, as you can't take them all out for the day without taking two cars and if we stay at home all day they get board very easily. A couple of weeks ago me and my husband decided to do a family barbeque, which resulted is us having all five kids for the weekend, because I am an auntie that seem to be wrapped around their little fingers, I can never say not. The kids are all aged between four and ten years old, so they can easily be entertained. We decided that the weather was so nice we should buy a paddling pool to keep the kids amused so us adult could have a few drinks and relax. While looking for a paddling pool, my husband found this multi-purpose sand pit that can be used as a sandpit of a paddling pool, so this is what we decided to go for. THE SAND PIT This is a Plum products sandpit, which has a unique octagonal shape and is made using the best quality timber wood. For me wood was a good option as it makes this sandpit very strong and sturdy which is a must when it is being used by my younger nephew and niece. The octagonal shape is very different compared to the standard square sand pit, it looks very lavish but you do need a good bit of space as the shape of this sand pit, so it limits where you can actually place it in the garden. The sand pit has rounded corners and consists of four wooden seats around the outer edge, I have to say Plum Products have designed the shape and finish of the sand pit perfectly for the little ones in mind, it is recommended that children over 18 months be allowed to play in the sand pit, but obviously this is down to you if you supervise smaller toddlers, than it should be fine. For me the best advantage is that this can be used as a paddling pool of ball pit if you wanted, just place a pool liner within the wooden frame and fill it up with either water or balls. The pool liners do not come with the sand pit, but they can be purchased very cheaply at DIY stores. As a safety precaution it is recommended that you always cover the sand pit once it has been finished with, this way the sand stay dry and you can be sure nothing has got into the pit which may harm your children. I am sure that the stained wood that makes up this sand pit will become a subject to the winter elements, so I am sure you will need to stain it at least once a year to protect the wood from deteriorating. WHATS INCLUDED This wooden sand pit comes flat packed with all assembly instructions included, the instructions were very clear to understand with step by step instructions and pictures to follow. It is basically made up of four main sections and four smaller sections that are easily fixed together, and then it is just a case of screwing the wooden seats into place, I would say the whole job should take you no longer that fifteen minutes to complete. The sand pit comes with a protective cover, to protect it from the weather and a ground sheet. The ground sheet is placed inside the main section of the sand pit and it stops weeds from growing up through the sand, it also allows water to drain through it but will not let the sand escape. Four 15 kilo bags of treated sand are supplied with the sand pit, the sand itself is very pale and fine so building sand castles maybe very difficult for the children but we found a few buckets of water helped the sand stick, so castles could be made. This wooden sand pit comes with a one year warranty and covers the wood from rot and insect damage, but if you follow the maintenance guidelines of covering the pit and staining it every now and then I am sure you will never need it. The height of the pit is roughly twenty three centimetres, width one hundred and eight centimetres and the length is one hundred and thirty one centimetres. I have found this to be a perfect size and can take up to four children at a time, but all five of the kids managed to squeeze in at any one time. PRICE / AVAILABILITY If you think this Plum Product sand pit is something your children would enjoy, then you can buy it a B&Q for £49.98. We bought it a few weeks ago and got an additional 10% off the price, therefore it cost £44.98. I have just checked the B&Q web site www.diy.com and you can currently buy this for £42.48 with a discount of 10% on top, so it works out cheaper than buying it in store. You will need to pay a delivery charge on top, but you could reserve and collect the sand pit to avoid a delivery charge. MY OPINION Buying this in a flat pack worked well as we could take it straight home after buying it and building was a breeze, although I have to give all the credit to my hubby and my two eldest nephews. The price we paid was very good and I am sure it will be around for years to come, we found that buying this actually encouraged the kids to play outside and not sit in front of the television all day, so even for that is was worth the money. This appealed to the younger four to six year olds and they sat and played for hours, but the older kids got board after a little while so I would recommend this for the younger kids. Turning the sand pit into a pool was very easy, we just flattened all of the sand within the pit and then laid a thick liner over the top. I just turned on the hose and the pool was full within ten minutes, so at this point the bigger kids came back out of the house to play. I love that this is a universal outdoor activity as it keep the kids amused all week end, so I recommend this for all children, but remember the sun cream if the weather in hot as the kids will not want to get out.
I received a £25 discount for Woolworths and found a wooden sandpit for my son that was £49.99 so thought that is was an excellent buy for £25. It arrived in a small flat pack box which I stored in the garage for a few months until a week before my son's birthday. The sandpit itself is octagonal shaped and made with treated timber and is guaranteed for a year against wood rot and insect damage. Its dimensions when build are Length131cm Width 108cm Height 23 cm I opened it out the front of the house so I could store it in the garage till the night before his birthday and then just carry it through to the back garden. It took me a couple of minutes to understand how to put it together. It was a simple case of slotting the wood together and then screwing the four corner seats to the wood. The holes are not pre drilled so did take a lot of effort to screw in. The big problem was that it isn't actually secured together so ended up taping the pieces of wood together so that I would be able to move it. It has a base cover which is designed to let the water drain but also stops weeds growing through. The instructions suggest that you lay it down in the ground and then put the sand pit on top but I tacked the sheet to the bottom of the sandpit I have put three bags of play sand in. It could easily accommodate more but there was just about enough. The green cover is water proof and slips neatly over the sandpit. I found it difficult to get the slots to stay together as it isn't on a completely flat surface as our garden is on slope and the only flat part has a trampoline standing on it. I actually decided to give my son his sandpit a day early as he was having a tea party for a few friends and as it was going to be a lovely day so was going to be held in the garden. We were going on a trip on his actual birthday so this seemed the most appropriate time to give it to him. My son was delighted when he saw his sandpit which I had put the cover on and hidden buckets spades and a sand vehicle so he when he removed the cover discovers even more. He got to have a play on his own before his friends arrived. It turned out that the sandpit was the centre of the party and there were children from under one to four years of age attending his party with both boys and girls and each one thoroughly enjoyed the sand pit in different ways. The oldest was obviously the most capable of building sand castles and the boys tended to play more with the vehicles and drive them around the sand dunes. When we have had a sunny day and he has his paddling pool he has turned it into the seaside running from the sandpit to the paddling pool shouting " in the sea" and then "on the beach". I do think the sandpit has sparked his imagination in many ways. I also think it has helped his co ordination and is much more skilled at building sand castles. We pretty much straight away established a rule that there would be no shoes in the sandpit to try and keep the sand clean. I have had one of his friends who has visited that had a little tantrum as he didn't want to take his shoes off but regular children who come to play all automatically take their shoes off. I did discover after less than a week that the local cats had started using my son's sandpit as a toilet. While I had covered it up at night if we had gone out and I had not expected rain I had left it open for my son to play in when we returned. This resulted in having to dispose of all the sand and clean all his buckets and other play things in boiling water. I did at this point as I had to dismantle move most of the sand pit stuck the wood together with no more nails which has made the sandpit far more sturdy. I was advised by a friend to use lemon juice to deter the cats so I let some soak into the wood and mixed Lemon juice in with the sand. This does seem to have deterred cats from our garden never mind the sand pit so am very happy. I did actually apply more lemon juice yesterday to ensure things remained the same. I have found the cover is completely inadequate. I have often found it had caved in during the night or when it has rained. I do think partly this may be due to cats walking on it but also wind and puddles of water that form in the centre of the cover. I now have bricks on top of the cover on each of the four seats when it is covered but still it can be difficult to remove the cover after it has rained which often results with the puddle of water ending up in the sand. Overall I do think this product does have many flaws for the current price at Woolworths of £54 this seems to be too much for a product with many faults. However my son has owned this product for about 6 weeks and he and his friends have had hours of fun and there is something much more magical about been able to climb in your sandpit than just put your hands in however if I was purchasing a sandpit again I would look for a different product. I have seen this product available at Amazon and Marshall ward Catalogue if you decide this product is for you.